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AUSCERT External Security Bulletin Redistribution
Siemens Industrial Products Local Privilege Escalation Vulnerability
11 November 2016
AusCERT Security Bulletin Summary
Product: SIMATIC WinCC
SIMATIC PCS 7
SIMATIC WinCC Runtime Professional
SIMATIC WinCC (TIA Portal) Professional
Operating System: Windows
Impact/Access: Increased Privileges -- Existing Account
CVE Names: CVE-2016-7165
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Siemens Industrial Products Local Privilege Escalation Vulnerability
Original release date: November 08, 2016
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Siemens has released an advisory to inform its users how to mitigate a
privilege escalation vulnerability that affects several of its industrial
products. This vulnerability was reported directly to Siemens by WATERSURE
and KIANDRA IT. Siemens has produced updates for several products and
a temporary fix for the remaining affected products to mitigate this
Siemens reports that the vulnerability affects the following products:
V7.0 SP2 and earlier versions prior to V7.0 SP2 Upd 12,
V7.0 SP3: All versions prior to V7.0 SP3 Upd 8,
V7.2: All versions,
V7.3: All versions,
V7.4: All versions,
SIMATIC STEP 7 V5.X: All versions,
SIMATIC PCS 7:
V7.1 and earlier versions,
V8.0: All versions,
V8.1: All versions,
V8.2: All versions,
SIMATIC WinCC Runtime Professional: All versions,
SIMATIC WinCC (TIA Portal) Professional: All versions,
SIMATIC WinCC (TIA Portal) Basic, Comfort, Advanced: All versions
prior to V14,
SIMATIC STEP 7 (TIA Portal): All versions prior to V14,
SIMATIC NET PC-Software: All versions prior to V14,
SINEMA Remote Connect Client: All versions,
SINEMA Server: All versions prior to V13 SP2,
SIMATIC WinAC RTX 2010 SP2: All versions,
SIMATIC WinAC RTX F 2010 SP2: All versions,
SIMATIC IT Production Suite: All versions,
TeleControl Server Basic: All versions prior to V3.0 SP2,
SOFTNET Security Client V5.0: All versions,
Security Configuration Tool (SCT): All versions, and
Primary Setup Tool (PST): All versions.
This vulnerability could allow local users to escalate their privileges
if the affected products are not installed under the default path.
Impact to individual organizations depends on many factors that are unique
to each organization. NCCIC/ICS-CERT recommends that organizations evaluate
the impact of this vulnerability based on their operational environment,
architecture, and product implementation.
Siemens is a multinational company headquartered in Munich, Germany.
SIMATIC WinCC is a supervisory control and data acquisition (SCADA) system.
SIMATIC STEP 7 V5.X and STEP 7 (TIA Portal) are engineering software
products for SIMATIC PLC products.
SIMATIC PCS 7 is a distributed control system (DCS) integrating SIMATIC
SIMATIC WinCC Runtime Professional is a visualization runtime platform
used for operator control and monitoring of machines and plants.
SIMATIC WinCC (TIA Portal) is an engineering software program to configure
and program SIMATIC Panels, SIMATIC Industrial PCs, and Standard PCs
running WinCC Runtime Advanced or SCADA System WinCC Runtime Professional
SIMATIC NET PC-Software is used for communication between controllers
(PLCs) and PC based solutions (HMIs).
SINEMA Remote Connect Client ensures management of secure connections
(VPN) between headquarters, service technicians and the installed machines
SINEMA Server is network management software for use in Industrial Ethernet
SIMATIC WinAC RTX is the SIMATIC software controller for PC-based automation
SIMATIC IT Production Suite is a plant-centric IT solution building the
link between Business Systems (e.g., ERP) and Control Systems.
TeleControl Server Basic allows remote monitoring and control of plants.
The SOFTNET Security Client allows programming devices such as PCs and
notebook computers to access network nodes or automation systems protected
by SCALANCE S.
The simulation software SIMIT allows the simulation of plant setups in
order to anticipate faults in the early planning phase.
The Security Configuration Tool (SCT) is an engineering software for
security devices such as SCALANCE-S or CP 443-1 Advanced.
The Primary Setup Tool (PST) allows initial network configuration of
SIMATIC NET Industrial Ethernet products.
According to Siemens, these products are deployed across several sectors
including Chemical, Energy, Food and Agriculture, and Water and Wastewater
Systems. Siemens estimates that these products are used worldwide.
IMPROPER PRIVILEGE MANAGEMENT[a]
Unquoted service paths could allow local Microsoft Windows operating system
users to escalate their privileges if the affected products are not installed
under their default path ("C:\Program Files\*" or the localized equivalent).
CVE-2016-7165[b] has been assigned to this vulnerability. A CVSS
v3 base score of 6.4 has been calculated; the CVSS vector string is
This vulnerability is not exploitable remotely and can only be exploited
by a local valid operating system user.
EXISTENCE OF EXPLOIT
No known public exploits specifically target this vulnerability.
Crafting a working exploit for this vulnerability would be difficult.
If the affected products are installed under their default path ("C:\Program
Files\*" or the localized equivalent) and the default file system access
permissions for drive C:\ were not modified, the security vulnerability
is not exploitable.
However, if the affected products are not installed under their default
path ("C:\Program Files\*" or the localized equivalent), the security
vulnerability is potentially exploitable.
Siemens has released updates for the following products and encourages
customers to apply the updates as soon as possible:
V7.0 SP2: and earlier versions: Update to V7.0 SP2 Upd 12
V7.0 SP3: Update to V7.0 SP3 Upd 8
SIMATIC WinCC (TIA Portal) Basic, Comfort, Advanced: Upgrade to V14
SIMATIC STEP 7 (TIA Portal): Upgrade to V14
SIMATIC NET PC-Software: Upgrade to V14
TeleControl Server Basic: Update to V3.0 SP2
SINEMA Server: Update to V13 SP2
For the following products in nondefault configurations, Siemens provides
a temporary fix that resolves the security vulnerability:
SIMATIC WinCC V7.2,
SIMATIC STEP 7 V5.X,
SIMATIC PCS 7 V7.1 and V8.0,
SIMATIC STEP 7 (TIA Portal) V13,
SIMATIC NET PC-Software V13,
SINEMA Remote Connect Client,
SIMATIC WinAC RTX 2010 SP2,
SIMATIC WinAC RTX F 2010 SP2,
SIMATIC IT Production Suite,
SOFTNET Security Client V5.0,
Security Configuration Tool (SCT), and
Primary Setup Tool (PST).
The temporary fix can be found on Siemens web site at the following location:
For the following products in nondefault configurations, Siemens recommends
customers apply the temporary fix, follow Siemens' operational guidelines,
and restrict file system access rights:
SIMATIC WinCC V7.3 and V7.4,
SIMATIC PCS 7 V8.1 and V8.2,
SIMATIC WinCC Runtime Professional, and
SIMATIC WinCC (TIA Portal) Professional.
Siemens strongly recommends users protect network access to engineering
workstations and project storage with appropriate mechanisms. Siemens
also advises that users configure the operational environment according
to Siemens' Operational Guidelines for Industrial Security:
For more information on this vulnerability and more detailed mitigation
instructions, please see Siemens Security Advisory SSA-701708 at the
Siemens is working on new versions to incorporate the temporary fix for the
remaining affected products and will update SSA-701708 when new information
ICS-CERT recommends that users take defensive measures to minimize the
risk of exploitation of these vulnerabilities. Specifically, users should:
Minimize network exposure for all control system devices and/or systems,
and ensure that they are not accessible from the Internet.
Locate control system networks and remote devices behind firewalls,
and isolate them from the business network.
When remote access is required, use secure methods, such as Virtual
Private Networks (VPNs), recognizing that VPNs may have vulnerabilities
and should be updated to the most current version available. Also
recognize that VPN is only as secure as the connected devices.
ICS-CERT reminds organizations to perform proper impact analysis and risk
assessment prior to deploying defensive measures.
ICS-CERT also provides a section for control systems security recommended
practices on the ICS-CERT web page. Several recommended practices are
available for reading and download, including Improving Industrial Control
Systems Cybersecurity with Defense-in-Depth Strategies.
Additional mitigation guidance and recommended practices are
publicly available in the ICS-CERT Technical Information Paper,
ICS-TIP-12-146-01B--Targeted Cyber Intrusion Detection and Mitigation
Strategies, that is available for download from the ICS-CERT web site.
Organizations observing any suspected malicious activity should follow their
established internal procedures and report their findings to ICS-CERT for
tracking and correlation against other incidents.
CWE-269: Improper Privilege Management,
https://cwe.mitre.org/data/definitions/269.html, web site last accessed
November 08, 2016.
NIST uses this advisory to create the CVE web site report. This web
site will be active sometime after publication of this advisory.
web site last accessed November 08, 2016.
For any questions related to this report, please contact ICS-CERT at:
Toll Free: 1-877-776-7585
International Callers: (208) 526-0900
For industrial control systems security information and incident reporting:
ICS-CERT continuously strives to improve its products and services. You
can help by choosing one of the links below to provide feedback about
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